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Match Report

Old Haberdashers 37 Norwich 14


Old Haberdashers 37 Norwich 14

Norwich’s search for that illusive first win in London 1 goes on but there were improvements  as the players are learning. The margin of defeat should have been only 11 points but for a couple of decisions that went against them.

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Tom Lloyd

The first was 5 minutes into the game when the OH pack were picking and driving in the right corner and the ball was grounded well short of the line and then knocked on but the referee was unsighted and awarded a try.
On ten minutes the play was suspended for 45 minutes as an OH player broke his ankle.

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Vivek Valmiki

With enforced changes to the front row, Norwich struggled with the scrums for much of the game, something they have not done thus far and conceded a lot of scrum penalties. However, the breakdown penalty problem of the previous week had been rectified.

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Debutant Dave West

The second OH try came from a Norwich error when a clearance kick was charged down and the ball bounced favourably for them to score in the corner.

The third try for OH was all their own work and came from excellent support play which was the hallmark of their backs all afternoon. Norwich tackled well but the offloads in the tackle were taken and they scored wide on the left. The only conversion that OH scored all afternoon was directly in front towards the end of the game.

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Debutant Josh Stewart

Norwich strung some good phases together after this but with handling errors came a scrum,  followed by a scrum penalty and kick to the line relieving all the pressure they had patiently built up.

The next OH try came from a scrum in the Norwich 22 that they worked  out to the left wing.

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Josh Wilson

Norwich applied all the late pressure in the half but could not score, going in 20 points down with a botched lineout 10 metres from the OH line being the final opportunity of the half.

Norwich defended well under intense OH pressure in the second half but the scrum penalties kept them on the back-foot all the time and the next OH try came from one such penalty, worked well through the hands with good support to the left.

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Jack Walsh

Norwich finally started stringing their play together and put the hosts under some consistent pressure with repeated penalties conceded in the opponents 22. Norwich were unlucky to have a try disallowed when Matt Selby clearly grounded the ball from a drive forward but the referee was unsighted again and deemed it to have been knocked on as the ball was seen going forward after grounding. 

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Matt Selby

Replacement prop Josh Stuart then became the unlucky recipient of a team yellow card for the repeated scrum penalties that the referee had been quite patient with.

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Dave Micklethwaite

Norwich seemed to react well to this and raised the tempo with Llywelyn Bailey coming close to scoring in the right corner following a good break by Dave West on his debut. Jake Wharton then scorched through the middle of the defence and offloaded to Conan Hoey to score by the posts.  Theo Elliot added the conversion.

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Jake Wharton's break

OH scored twice again by exploiting their numerical advantage well and running the ball across their backs, stretching the Norwich cover.

Norwich ended the scoring for the afternoon when Dave Micklethwaite made a good break upfield taking play close to the OH line.  Norwich patiently built through the phases with repeated penalties conceded in the 22 by the hosts. Eventually the battering of the line paid off with George King going over by the posts. Elliot converted.

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George King scores

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Debutant Stuart Martin

Norwich’s improvements have been incremental but they will need a big step up in performance for a bottom of the table battle at Leighton Buzzard next week with three of their back line missing..

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Jason Hynd

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